Storytelling. How do you show it’s power?

This is the power of storytelling. When it hurts the most, is when the story is the most important to share.

Heather Heyer’s Mom speaks about her daughter at the memorial service. Getting huge coverage in the press Washginton Post and the New York Times this remarkable women is reminding us that we each need to take a stand and not stand silent.

The quote that has captured the attention and hearts of the world;

“They tried to kill my child to shut her up…”

Note: A GoFundMe campaign created to support Ms. Heyer’s family had surpassed $200,000 as of Sunday evening.


Video curtesy of Facebook Videos code, posted by former SF mayor & 49th Lt. Gov. of California, Gavin Newsom

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Loving that the Storytelling Movement Continues

Posted August 7, 2017 By Frank Strona

 The Storytelling Movement Continues

Just catching up on some of my news feeds and came across this recent post from the Edge Network. As many of you know I hold a special place in my heart, head (and yes, evan my wallet) about the significant importance of  “Storytelling“. It is more than something just for children and I  love how seeing more and more forums integrating the technique into everything from health communication, care, advocacy, to finance.

Edge Network; Oral Histories of San Fran Activism

New Storytelling Project to Gather Oral Histories on San Francisco AIDS Activism

The GLBT Historical Society has launched a new oral history project under the guidance of historian Joey Plaster to chronicle, preserve and share the history of ACT UP/San Francisco and other AIDS direct-action groups.

For more on Storytelling and the full story:

For more information

About providing an interview or volunteering, contact Joey Plaster at To take part in the conversation and get regular updates, join the project’s Facebook group and visit the project’s page on the GLBT Historical Society website.

For more information on the GLBT Historical Society, visit

Interested in how you can add Storytelling?  
Find out more details on the MentorSF’s  Storytelling Technology Bootcamp 

This engaged hands-on “Bootcamp” style workshop is an overview of ways and tools to share personal and communal stories with your family, friends or for wider sharing. It will cover the use of different tools and platforms from micro-blogging, to full out blog tools, e-journaling, use of Facebook as a story collector and more.

The 60 – 90 minute sessions are each designed to be interactive can be taken in any order. Sessions are arranged for 1:1 learning in person or online. For more information visit:Storytelling Technology Bootcamp

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Storytelling the Intergenerational LGBTQ Culture way with The Generations Project ( 

Sharing stories that spane the LGBTQ experience one story at a time. 

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More ways to increase your income with Social Media

Posted July 25, 2017 By Frank Strona

Never miss an opportunity because of a closed door

Income. Like it or not, it is what keeps our business solvent. The Funding Circle Resource Center just shared an interesting and super user-friendly read on way to increase your income with Social Media. They suggest ways, with minimal outlay, you can see a significant increase. While I think it goes deeper than any simple list can lay out, and what most of the list doesn’t account for is the cost of your time – I think its a great “idea read” to prompt some active engagement with your teams, or yourself on ways to “up” your opportunities.

The 6 step plan they offer is  based on the following points: 
  • Step 1: Goals
  • Step 2: Budget
  • Step 3: Platforms
  • Step 4: Audience
  • Step 5: Creativity
  • Step 6: Analyze
I think the list is a good reminder. I also shared a version from the State of Digital back in 2016, that was equally as simple – but I added a few adaptions you might find interesting as well. You can read my Engage!  post on Thinking behind promotion your digital content  to get an idea.
For the full read of the  article from the Funding Circle, Resource Center visit them here:
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My DC Pal, Strother Gaines is the guest on the podcast this week and does a great job sharing and talking about his coaching work through but really spent some time with podcast host Lisa Cummings, StrengthsFinder Speaker/Trainer at Lead ThroughStrengths on the insights and the pitfalls that happen when we stay stuck and forget how to be more than the “character” we play in life. I so share his feelings that after so much effort in the academic or real world efforts towards a carrer – it can become a struggle to then find that it, as you achieve, it may not be what you hold as the reason to wake up each day.
 Team Unicorn
“it’s a lot easier to just be a horse, blend in and call it a day but a Unicorn can’t do that.
It’s impossible to hide how awesome it is because it’s got a giant horn on it’s head.
Everyone can see it. Everybody knows. There’s nowhere to hide and a Unicorn doesn’t want to.” 
— Strother Gaines,
I really resonated on his thoughts about the importance that we have to taking responsibility towards being “our best self”.  Something I have shared on before, when I frame the need for our “being the best we can be, for ourselves first”.  I know it is not an easy process. The economic and emotional impact of how others see a change, all play a crucial deciding role in that moment where we get the chance to “turn & pivot”. I encourage you to take some time and visit and listen to the podcast in its entirerty.

I also found some really great resources, you may want to check out both on Strother’s site: as well as on Lisa’s webite: 

Check out Strother’s get-to-know-him video and the full TEDx talk on Storytelling as well.

Strother Gaines Podcast on

This Episode’s Focus on Strengths, Authenticity and Connection with Unicorn Strother Gaines

This week Lisa chats with Strother Gaines, where they talk about using your strengths to maximize the authentic “you” at work.  Strother works with a lot of clients who feel trapped in other people’s expectations. This interview will help you look at your innate talents and focus on who you are at your natural best. By doing that, you’ll make stronger connections in your career because you’re not working so hard at showing up like you think you’re supposed to at the office.
















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#MentorSFCA Moments nonprofits

From one of the #MentorSFCA Moments recently posted on Twitter.

Nonprofits don’t always have the access to the leading edge of tech or traiing. So it’s good to share tips when I can. I’ve been a fan of Craig Newmark efforts with nonprofits for several years and it’s not becuase we have ever met. Note: we had spoken a few years back on a project I was working for the Health Department. Rather he doesnt stop moving. He trys new things out, samples them, then if they seem to success, he finds the right people to handle them, he reaches out to those who can benefit from his efforts, then, he is off to a new adventure to discover. Even when he didnt quite get the need, he was at least open to listening to a pitch. At least that has been my take on him

On his blog he recently shared this article.  I  impressed with its simplicity and clarity – sometimes these “5 Things” or “10 Ways To…” really are just a fancy way for those trying garnish more metrics and meaurements either from hits or revenue (ie SEO). No if you don’t know Search Engine Optimization (or SEO) which is really just the fancy way to figure out how to measure what you are dong online and increase impact.  One of the limitations I think that SEO recommandations have is that they are more often than not – marketing driven. Weak in an understanding of communications (health or otherwise) or “call to action” from the service side. Something that I think nonprofits often need more of.

So occassionally when I come across some lists that really are content driven and have value worth sharing (and if they get Craig strong ompimazation in the mean time great!), as this one is, I’ll willing to share it out. As someone who works routinely with small health and social justice non-profits, many of which lack big funders, or in house tech – these were great reminders.

For the full article visit: 

Curated via post 

5 Things Nonprofits Should Be Doing On Social Media

I’l not repost his list and all the content, because well  – its his. But did want to tease with the 5 bullets and encourage you to check out the short read over that new cup of coffee or while waiting in line (jsut not while in your car please).

1. Keep up with the latest trends. (Not even gonna touch this one, but you can read more here on StoryTelling or my Engage Post on the Power of Telling Stories  and my own ideas on that)

2. Write the content that you want shared. (That means, you have to script what you want shared)

3. Team up with allied orgs and your biggest supporters to host a Twitter Chat. (Partnerships come in all shapes and sizes – use them creatively.)

4. Don’t add punctuation to a hashtag.  (I might add — think about the reasons behind using a hashtag as well)

5. Make sure your content is mobile-friendly. (Yeah – that means you might need to spend some money to redesign that inhouse template website to ensure its functional)



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NTEN’s 18NTC for those working and leading nonprofits

Posted June 25, 2017 By Frank Strona

NTEN’s 18NTC for those working and leading nonprofits and ready to expand the boundaries of social media & digital opportunities

For those of you looking to expand your networking and socializing with others in the nonprofit sector with a love and head for social media, data, and communication – you will want to put the annual NTEN ( 18NTC ) sponsored the conference in New Orleans on your calendar for 2018. I attended it last when it was held in Austin (#15NTC).  I can honestly say that it was some of the best minglings of folks I had seen in a while. Strong on women and diversity representation – the diverse and creative blending of the presenters, vendors and top notch attendees really made this the event for the  “limited travel budget” goer one worth advocating.

From #15NTC co-presented workshop

To find out more about the 18NTC conference, visit: (#18NTC for those of you who follow your hashtags on twitter).  Now if you can’t wait till then – they have several other tech conferences remaining in 2017 including:

>>> Albuquerque New Mexico in September for the Nonprofit Tech Roundup/Digital Strategy event

>>> Portland Oregon in October for the NonProfit Tech Roundup

Engaged Learning from NTEN

Other ways for you to get involved with NTEN is to visit and sign up for some of its educational programming both online and in-person. They also have a “Nonprofit Technology Professional Certificate” program but I haven’t experienced that, so can’t speak much on it but you can read more on it here:

For a full list of events visit the NTEN Events Calendar  

For those of you curious about NTEN itself – check out its mission and values statements – something they proudly put forward upfront and visible.
This is somewhat why I find these folks so powerful and compelling. They aren’t just tossing together a social media “extravaganza”. Not that there is anything innately wrong with an excuse to have a party – because these folks do know have to have fun. But they really understand the unique way that digital technology partners with health and community services, nonprofit and planning.

You may also want to think about joining the NTEN membership.

Annual membership offers reduced rates on events and the online trainings.  Information on becoming a member can be found here:
Membership rates are affordable. Especially compared to the over priced rates you see from marketing and for-profit organizations. Many of the higher priced ones focus on SEO and “sales-thinking” over social justice and the unique needs of the nonprofit.  The membership rates range from $99 for an individual. They offer a tiered rate system for organizations from $195 to $1000.  Both non-profit and for profit organizations are welcome to become members. Other member benefits are listed on it’s membership page.





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‪If you liked the @hacktheprocess episode (ep43) featuring my interview and the journey I took towards becoming me. [You can see my #Engage! post on it here:

Check out the latest podcast ep44 featuring @SatoriPrime and hear how these two spin experience toward mindful marketing & #coaching

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Everyone makes the journey to success that works for them. Here is one version of mine. What will yours be?

Earlier last week, an interview I sat for, from the Hack the Process (HTP) podcast  program went live on Soundcloud and iTunes .

Balancing Activism, Privilege, and Social Media with Frank Strona on Hack the Process Podcast, Episode 43


While it is always with some nervousness I share some of my thoughts and history around the opportunities and directions I took towards becoming who I am today. HTP host M. David Green couldn’t have made it much easier and more comfortable. One of the parts I liked best was that he also takes the extra time to add various links mentioned during the interview and lists them below the podcast itself the HTP podcast website  Allowing folks to read more about the mentioned resources or people.

When Episode 43 launched the other morning, I took some time to listen to it (or rather me) share and answer some of his questions. My first thought was – “Really?? – 45 mins of me! thats a lot of me“. But as I listened, what I heard was a series of vignettes and stories that illustrated a journey that had both intertwined and intersections from work, love, family, pain, identity, perseverance, and survival. Sometimes I was on linear path towards a goal and other times I was working concurrently in parallel. I hope to be take some time over the next month to edit the sound file into smaller more digestible sound bites and create some more personally narrative posts to share some of my more individual life lessons.

But in the mean time – please feel free to listen and/or share my story with your lists, students, friends. I intend to leave the comment box open on this post for people can add comments here if you choose not to leave them on the podcast site.


Note: If you choose to share the link by Twitter or on, include my profile @FVStrona. If you want to share on your own blogs – link back to here as well!

About Hack The Process and it’s host M. David Green: He is a writer and agile business coach, and the founder of Agile That Works, a consultancy that helps people in engineering organizations collaborate more effectively to make constant improvement a daily practice.If you have ideas or a pitch  to be a guest on the podcast, they have a page just for that!






1 Comment. Join the Conversation

Can you across this article today that really triggered something that I’ve been observing in various social and academic disciplines. Th growing resistance to have uncomfortable, challenging conversations with new professionals, students, and those who we disagree with. 

Fact: I can disagree with you and still like you

Fact: I don’t have to like you to agree with you

It’s not harsh. It’s realistic and time for us to stop sugar coating discussions because it may make some people uncomfortable. Respectful and engaged dialoges can be uncomfortable, you can make those involved in the process struggle, stretch,  reconsider their actions and their thoughts. The ability to stay in that “uncomfortable moment” is what gives birth to that process. 
But we’ve moved away from the honesty of discussions towards a misaligned interpretation “correctness” that seeks insist that discussions be more like “playing nice” instead of being a process that achieves a common unified outcome. 

To achieve any level of comfort, means you must struggle and get through the discomfort.

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